As we begin to move towards the end of the season I found myself reflecting on a similar battle we have faced a few times over recent seasons, the battle to be in the top eight.

The benefits of being in the top eight are not only a chance at the playoffs and the chance to aim for the final but also Champions Cup rugby next season rather than Challenge Cup. The spoils of better quality opposition hopefully bringing higher match attendances and higher revenues which has knock on effects to building a better team.

Right now we find ourselves on the wrong side of that line in ninth place and have a battle on our hands over the next few matches, every match is potentially a knock out match and while we have the personnel to do it we need them to be top of their game for 80 minutes every week.

And we need our coaching staff to be on point every week. This is what I think has let us down over the last few years.

We’ve been through a number of head coaches over the last few years. Alan Solomons (three years), Duncan Hodge (one year interim) Richard Cockerill (four years) Mike Blair (two years) and even Steve Diamond for a few months.

READ MORE: Sean Everitt looks to ease expectations after Edinburgh sign Tuipulotu

Now we have Sean Everitt who initially signed for one year but recently extended his contract for another two ears taking it to at least 2026. Our most successful season was during the Cockerill era where we topped conference B of Pro14 winning 11 out of 15 matches and went on to be knocked out by Ulster in the semi final, a weird season though because it was interrupted by Covid and much of the season was minus fans.

Despite some contrary beliefs Edinburgh fans are full of ambition and desperately want our team to win the important silverware, just because we are nice people doesn’t mean we don’t want it just as much as everyone else.

So why do I believe Sean is the man to get us to the top?

Scotland Rugby News: Mosese Tuipulotu has signed for Edinburgh

Sean was appointed as coach very close to the start of the season and didn’t get much of pre-season with the team, despite this we have won 10 of 15 matches we have played so far, that’s nearly as many wins as we had in our most successful season in recent years as mentioned above.

Sean initially only committed to one year which I feel was to see if he would be the right fit, he’s fitted right in. The squad respect him and the fans appreciate him, he’s what we need right now.

We had the … let’s use the word assertive ... years of Cockerill followed by the not so confident couple of years from Mike Blair. What we need now is a level and confident coach, something I feel we have in Sean.

With him now committing another two years to us and bringing him in line with the other coaching staff he can knuckle down and mould the team the way he wants. The team he has right now is what he inherited when he joined us, he’s not had the opportunity to build the team he wants yet.

These are already starting to come through with recent announcements of signing prop Paul Hill, bringing Magnus Bradbury back home and the news yesterday of Mosese Tuipulotu coming this summer from the Waratahs.

READ MORE: Scottish officials get summer appointments as refs named for Scotland tour games

It’s going to be interesting to see how Mosese shapes up for us. He’s not had much game time for the Waratahs of late but I’m sure Sean has seen something in him we can develop so I’m excited to see what he brings.

He speaks sense and doesn’t make excuses. I’ve heard Sean speak a number of times, not just to the press but also at Edinburgh Rugby events. He knows what he’s talking about, he answers honestly and from the heart and I trust what he’s saying. He brings a wealth of experience to the role and looks at things in a way that I can only dream of understanding but yet when you hear him talk you get it and it builds confidence. If he’s building that confidence with the fans he’s also building confidence with the squad.

The growth and results are not going to come overnight. Look at any first season with a new coach, it’s rare they get results straight away but give a good coach time and they will get the best out of the team and the results will follow…I believe great things will come.

Season 23/24 is not over by a long shot, the squad will work hard and can get the results we need to be in the top 8 then playoffs will beckon and top flight Champions Cup next year. It’s still within our grasp this year but I firmly believe, with Sean in charge, even greater things beckon for next year.